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A varied night for Alton selectmen

Board approves permit fee changes, transfer station, television and more

by Tim Croes
Staff Writer - The Baysider
May 08, 2012
ALTON — The Alton Board of Selectmen met on Monday, May 7, and held public hearings on changes to the Zoning Board of Adjustment and building permit fees.

Ken McWilliams, the town planner, explained the changes in the ZBA fees.

He explained that the field administrative decision, special exception, variance and equitable waivers of dimension fees were currently $60 and would be raised to $125.

McWilliams explained that the raise in the cost would help the town come closer in man hours spent equaling the cost of the fees.

Member Peter Bolster reported that at the state level the rule of thumb is that fees are no more than 110 percent of the money spent.

McWilliams said the changes would still be above that number, and the board approved the changes.

John Dever, the building inspector, detailed several changes to the building permit fees.

These changes included: general construction and commercial construction per square foot, the cost of an accessory structure, remodeling, cell tower regulations, plumbing permits, temporary occupancy permits and permanent and temporary sign permits.

Dever also talked about penalties for people working without permits. The penalties are $50 for a first offense, $100 for a second offense and $250 for a third offense.

Member Marc DeCoff asked a question about people not having proper markings for 911 calls.

Russ Bailey, the town administrator, reported that there is a separate ordinance that is enforced by the police.

DeCoff talked specifically about the island homes and challenges of finding those homes.

The board approved the changes to the building permit fees.

The Alton American Legion will be holding a parade on Monday, May 28, at 10 a.m. in Monument Square in celebration of Memorial Day.

The board discussed the brochure that will be published to promote the changes at the transfer station.

Starting on June 1, there will be four categories for construction and demolition.

There will be two bins for clean recyclable materials, a bin for bulky waste that will be buried, a bin for shingles and a bin for metal.

The board approved a couple of minor changes that were to be made before the brochures are published.

Scott Simonds, the director of the transfer station, asked that the board set some rules for the swap shop. This issue will be addressed in the future.

Bolster reported that LRPA-TV Channel 26 would feature Alton meetings in primetime on Thursdays.

He also thanked students and members of Alton Centennial Rotary Club that helped cleanup the John Racine Memorial Way on Saturday, May 5.

Bailey presented the board with a new agreement with LRPA-TV that will cost $14,127.75.

The board discussed a recommendation from McWilliams and highway agent Ken Roberts to become part of a study for the Route 140 corridor.

Gilmanton, Belmont and Northfield participate in the study.

Vice-chair Loring Carr questioned why the town should join the study, but the rest of the board approved joining the study.

Bailey reported that work on Places Mill Bridge would be limiting travel on the road to one lane but wouldn't cause shut down on the road.

The board discussed putting out to bid the curbing work for the sidewalks in town.

Bids for asphalt and concrete on the sidewalk will be separate, and the board approved putting the curbing portion of the project out to bid.

Bailey reported that the town has spent $340,000 on paving town roads and roads that have been worked on include: Rand Hill Road, New Durham Road, Coffin Brook, Acorn Street, Haven Lane and Rollins Road.

The board discussed drafting a bid for the culvert replacement on Rand Hill Road. The project will be split into two separate bids, one for the removal of the existing culvert and one for the installation of a new culvert.

The board approved the bid, but Carr questioned why the project would be done in August.

He was told that was done so that it wouldn't be done during the school year.

The board tabled a request for two driveways for a house on Smith Point Road.

Carr and Chair Dave Hussey agreed that they needed to visit the site before making a decision.

The board approved several land use items recommended by the town assessor and approved a fund balance policy.

The town is required to have a generic fund balance policy that lays out the different fund balances and how they are used.

Bailey reported that a minimum amount of between five and 17 percent is required and that the town is running around nine percent.

The board approved a request by the North Medford Racing Club to hold a portion of a relay race in Alton Bay in September.

The board also approved a request by White Mountain Kettle Corn to have a spot in Alton Bay during Memorial Day Weekend.

The board also approved a request by the Alton American Legion to hold a parade on Monday, May 28, at 10 a.m. in Monument Square.

The board also approved a request for a raffle to be held on June 16 at Jay's Mini-golf by the Alton Centennial Rotary Club.

Hussey suggested talking about granting annual raffle approval at a future meeting, so that groups wouldn't have to come before the board for each raffle they hold.

The next scheduled meeting of the Alton Board of Selectmen is on Monday, May 21, at 6 p.m. at the Alton Town Hall.

Tim Croes can be reached at tcroes@salmonpress.com or 569-3126

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